To be fearless, just ask yourself ‘what is it that you are afraid of losing’?
At a Talk that I delivered recently, a young lady asked me how to deal with insecurity and fear. She said she often spent long spells of time imagining stuff that could possibly happen to her – a pink slip, a health setback, a relationship problem, her son failing in school and such.
“I know it is stupid to be this way. But how does one get rid of ‘worst-case scenarios’ from your head,” she asked.
I, in turn, asked her: “What is the worst that can happen to you?”
She thought for a moment and replied: “Two things – either my son can die or I can die. Yes, these are my worst-case scenarios.”
My next question to her was this: “Is there anything that you can do to prevent these scenarios from ever happening in your Life?”
Again she thought about it deeply and exclaimed: “No. Seriously, noooooooooooo!”
I asked her: “So why worry and fear about something that you can’t prevent?”
And that is really how you get rid of worst-case scenarios in your head. To be sure, the human mind can beat any Bollywood screenwriter in terms of conjuring up unheard of, unfathomable, often fantasy-based scenarios. Some of them will necessarily torment you with worry, anxiety, insecurity and fear. There is a pretty simple way to deal with these debilitating emotions.
In every situation that makes me fearful, I ask myself what is the worst that can happen. And I tell my mind that I am ready and willing for that eventuality. For instance, in a matter relating to a police complaint filed against me, by my creditor, it had become evident that if the court disallowed my bail application, I would be arrested and remanded in custody. I asked my lawyer if there was a way out. He said that there was none since I did not have money to furnish a personal surety (a financial bond). This situation was unfolding in another city. Honestly, I was feeling very restless and fearful. So, I took a deep breath and called up Vaani. I briefed her of the logical, practical reality we were faced with. And then I told her, “Listen, I will stay strong where I am and wherever I have to go. You stay strong too. A way will be born soon.” Just that acceptance of whatever our reality was at that moment – that I will be arrested, so be it! – changed the way I felt. I became fearless. In another situation, when I was diagnosed with a possible life-threatening health condition, I considered the worst that could happen to me if we didn’t find the money to get a surgery done. I would die, I reckoned. The whole scenario of my impending death unfolded in my mind’s eye and I actually started smiling. Of course, all of us will die, I remember thinking. “And this was perhaps my time to die,” I had concluded. That thought actually made me feel lighter – and totally fearless. From then on, whenever I am faced with any no-go situation – and I have to deal with several of them each week – I remind myself that “I was once even prepared to die”. Whenever I do this, my fear always slinks away.